Intended for healthcare professionals

Observations Body Politic

Message to new government: please ban buzzwords

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.c2407 (Published 05 May 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c2407

Beware of Buzzwords

Linguists seem curiously tolerant of certain buzzwords that obfuscate
rather than communicate. These buzzwords comprise oxymora, redundancies,
and slogans. For example, "political correctness" is an oxymoron, because
politicians are notoriously dishonest and incorrect; "climate change" is a
redundancy, because climate always changes; and "let's all come together
and move forward" is a slogan, because it seeks to control us as if we
were unruly children. Buzzwords are noxious nonsense and newspeak that
subliminally undermine our intellectual integrity and autonomy. George
Orwell's novel 1984 is prescient and timeless.

Competing interests: No competing interests

17 May 2011
Hugh Mann
Physician
Eagle Rock, MO 65641 USA